Thursday, December 28, 2017

Islamorada Tarpon

Ryan, Brady, Patty, and I headed out Fishing today in Islamorada. We caught a bunch of snappers and jacks to start. Then we headed into the backcountry chasing sharks. We pulled the hook on a lemon shark and landed a bonnet-head. We then went back to snappers and jacks. Ryan then made a great cast to rolling Tarpon and we fought and released the first Tarpon of the winter season. Pro Tip: Reacting quickly makes a difference. We had three seconds to make a cast to a pod of rolling Tarpon. Ryan saw the fish and made the cast. His quick reaction netted him his first Tarpon of the winter season.

Back in the Keys

Fished with Lori, Justin, and Luke yesterday in the Keys. Yes the keys are still there after the hurricane. In fact, where I go and what I have seen things look much better. There is definitely still evidence of the destruction, but the recovery has been pretty good from what I have seen. We started out fishing downtown and caught a bunch of snappers and jacks. We moved into the backcountry where we went one for three on lemon sharks and we also had a bonnet head shark. Pro Tip: Waiting until a fish turns to swim away increases your chances of a solid hookup with a circle hook. Sometimes this is easier said than done.

Friday, December 8, 2017

Monster Striper on the Fly

Fished with Mike last Sunday in the ocean for stripers. We set out to catch Stripers on the flyrod. We found the fish under birds and on the surface. We caught them with floating lines on the surface. We ended up catching and releasing 15 stripers up to 43". The fish of the day was Mike's 43" striper that weighed over 35 pounds that he caught on the fly. It was his personal best on the fly. The fishing was excellent. Pro Tip: Fish on the surface require a different approach. Forget those weighed lures and jigs. Unweighted soft plastics or floating lines on the flyrod are the best option. Other surface lures like poppers are another option that produces.

Sunday, December 3, 2017

15 Stripers

Fished with Larry in the ocean on Saturday. We headed out and found a few fish trolling. Then the birds showed up and the fish chewed on the surface. We ended up catching and releasing over a dozen more fish up to 43" and around thirty pounds. We had fantastic conditions and happy fish. Pro Tip: Bunker always swim into the wind. The movement of the bait is mirrored by the stripers.

Friday, December 1, 2017


Fished last Sunday with Frank and Dave in the ocean for stripers. We trolled up one keeper in tough conditions and called it a day. Pro Tip: Stagger your lines when trolling. Your "long" lines should be different lengths. The same is true for your short lines. This minimizes tangles when you turn.

Last Saturday

Fished with Chris last Saturday in the ocean. We had a tough day. We had one on but pulled the hook. It has been hot and cold. Pro Tip: Avoid pumping and winding with mojos and umbrella rigs. The heavy weight of the lures will dislodge the hook of you pump and wind. It is better to reel steady with minimal pumping of the rod.

Joe Hughes

Friday, November 24, 2017

48” Striper

Fished today with Coz, Chip, Coz, and Zach in the ocean for stripers. Things started out slow but we kept at it. We finally found the fish and our search was worth it. We started out trolling and had four stripers over 40". We switched over to jigs and we caught another eight or nine on jigs. Almost all were over 40". The fish of the day was a 48" almost fifty pound striper we caught on a jig. Pro Tip: The more vertical you can keep your line, the more effective it usually is. This means reeling in your jig and redeploying as your jig drifts behind the boat.

Monday, November 20, 2017

More Back Bay Stripers

Fished with Sam and Nan in the bay on Saturday. We started off strong and we had fish on our first two casts. We ended up releasing ten stripers. About half were on jigs and the other half was on spot. The fish are starting to chew in the ocean but the back bay action has been great. Pro Tip: The wind frequently changes on the tide change. It will either change speed or direction when the tide changes. On Saturday, the wind shifted and really started blowing when the tide changed.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Stripers in the Bay

Fished with Jay, Jake, and Brian in the bay on Sunday. We caught and released two stripers and one fluke. We had one bass on a spot and the rest of the fish on jigs. Pro Tip: Keep your baits clean and free of seaweed. Even a little piece will deter fish from biting. In addition, weed begets weed. A little weed seems to attract more weed. Keep it clean for the most bites.

Back Bay Bass

Fished Saturday with Jim, Peter, and Andrew in the back. We caught and released about seven bass and missed a few others. The fish continue to chew and this should continue for a few more weeks in the back. All the fish were caught on jigs. Pro Tip: Vary your retrieve. Deeper water usually means a slow jigging retrieve. In shallow water, a slow steady retrieve can be very productive. When you get a bite, be sure to stick with what worked.

Sunday, November 5, 2017

15 Stripers in the Bay

Fished today with John, Kevin, Jack, and Mason in the bay. The action continues to be good and we had around 15 stripers to 29" that we caught and released. All the fish were caught on jigs. We even had a triple header at one point. Pro Tip: Make sure your jig is clean. The smallest piece of seaweed or grass on your jig will eliminate any fish's desire to bite it.

25 Stripers

Fished with Doug in the bay on Saturday. We had a great day catching and releasing 25 stripers. We had no keepers and all the fish were schoolies. The action was consistent all day. Pro Tip: As water temperatures cool, jigs become more effective than poppers. Subsurface lures become increasingly more effective.

Friday, November 3, 2017

Albies in Sea Isle

Ryan and I fished sunset. At his urging we headed out to the ocean in search of albies. We only had a limited time, but we found them chewing and we hooked up immediately. In about a half hour we landed seven albies and pulled the hook on two others. They are still here. Not sure for how long... Pro Tip: Our local albies have been acting very different than the Montauk albies. They only surface briefly and casts must be quick and accurate to produce.

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Back Bay Stripers

The stripers have been biting in the back bay. This one ate a spot in the bay last weekend.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Albies in Sea Isle

The albies have followed me home from Montauk and they are here in my home waters of Sea Isle. It has been good and is reminiscent of Montauk fishing. Also, sea bass season opened and fishing has been great. I have a few openings this weekend and next weekend. Call me at (609) 827-3442 if you are interested.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Last Day in Montauk

Fished with Doug and Patty in Montauk today. It was my last day in Montauk for the season and it was fantastic. We only fished for a few hours this morning because I was bringing the boat back to New Jersey today. We had good action this morning catching over ten albies in a little less than two hours. Pro Tip: When casting into the wind, a lower trajectory gives you more distance and less wind knots.